This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at

Tag: Reggie

Artists who shared more than a name

The hospital chapel, Listowel


Michael O’Connor and Michael O’Connor

Two departed Listowel artists, Michael O’Connor and Michael O’Connor were not related but had much in common.

Michael O’Connor, formerly of 24 The Square was a quiet unassuming man. He was passionate and painstaking about his chosen hobby which was Celtic Illumination. He is regarded as one of the best exponents of this art and his work is soon to be on display in his childhood home, now Kerry Writers Museum.

O’Connor passed away in 1969.

An example of Michael O’Connor’s work

The other Michael O’Connor is also recognised as one of the best exponents of his chosen art form.

Like his namesake he realised the importance of studying the work of great artists who excelled in your genre.

Michael of William Street collected thousands of posters designed by international artists, the best practitioners of graphic art and design.

Like Michael of The Square he didn’t seek the limelight and it is through others appreciation of his work that we have come to know him.

He designed posters for a Fleadh Cheoil and for Listowel Writers’ Week in his native Listowel.

Michael passed away in 2010

Example of the work of Michael O’Connor

A collection of Michael’s posters, both his own work and some of his collection of international graphic art is held in The Limerick City Art Gallery.


Eighty Pubs!!!!!!

Dave O’Sullivan found this interesting snippet about a troubled time in Listowel.

We know that tensions were heightened around this time so I’m presuming the IRA closed the pubs to prevent trouble.


A Rescue

My Cork family are all dog lovers .

Here they are at Christmastime in The Regional Park in Ballincollig with Molly and Reggie.

The beautiful gentle Reggie had a bad start in life. He was found abandoned and homeless, mangy and undernourished by some kind soul who brought him to the Rescue Centre.

When my family came to choose their new companion animal, Reggie chose them.

He is now a rather unlikely lapdog.

He more than appreciates his rescuers and repays all their kindness to him in unstinted affection.



This is the lovely new Christmas light garland for 2022. It celebrates Listowel’s literary heritage.

Listowel Writers’ Week opens a new chapter in Listowel’s literary history in 2023 as the festival welcomes its new curator.

Stephen Connelly comes with a hugely impressive cv. I wish him all the best in his new role and I look forward to seeing what he has in store for us in June.


New Kid on the Block

My Cork family has a new dog. You may remember that their beloved Helios passed away a while back. They felt it was time to take another dog to their hearts. Reggie is a sweet tempered lurcher. Molly has welcomed him to the extended family.

Reggie had a rough start in life and was homeless for a while before being rescued. Housetraining and lead training are in hand.


Times Past

Mary Nolan sent us this photo of the cast of Presentation Secondary School’s 1979 operetta, Lilac Time


Christmas Jumper Day

Our local Vincent’s shop has a great selection of toys, clothes and bric a brac at rock bottom prices. If you are finding it hard to make ends meet this Christmas, drop in on Thursday or Friday and you could have your family decked out and all your presents sorted for next to nothing.

And this shop has the nicest shop volunteers as well.



Searching for Photos of a Stokes ancestor

Gus Stokes has been in touch. He found the below story on Listowel Connection from 2012.

Back Row L.toR.Tom Costello, Danny Lane, Bill J. Kirby, Sean Stokes, John MacNamara (agri instructor), Chris Goulding, Patsy O’Sullivan, William Stack, Tim Buckley, John Collins, Toddy O’Sullivan
Middle: Paddy Finucane(cut out of photo),_________ James Murray, John Broderick, Paddy Carroll, John O’Keeffe, Dan Molyneaux, Tim MacMahon,Paddy Maher, John Joe Galvin,Tom O’Sullivan, Vincent Brennan,Jerh Galvin, Liam McElligott, Dick Stokes, Maurice Stack
Front: Paddy Drummond, Dan J. Moloney,———–,————, Canon P. O’Sullivan, Jerry Moyles (C.A.O. Kerry) Bob Fitzgerald, ———–, Tom Sheehan
This is a photograph of Vincent’s photograph. He has all the names except 3 and 2 of them are not local and may have been instructors on the course. The photo has both students and teachers in it and was taken in the old VEC school on Church St.

Here is Gus’ email;

Looking for Jack Stokes Dirrha photos and wondering if he could be found in this photo

I am his grandson but sadly I was 10 years too late to find my birth mother or any living relatives with photos of my family and I would be over joyed to see any photos of my mother who was born c1935 and went to Presentation Convent but I was unable to get any joy when I visited the school but I found my mother has a daughter who is delightful but only had  Collection photo that came as quite a shock !

Any help would be greatly appreciated and I will continue to search your wonderful website and maybe you were at the Library lecture on local fables?

I hope to get back to Listowel sometime in the next few months 

Best wishes for the Holidays 

Gus Stokes


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